Summer 2009  (-the last newsletter until November due to extensive foreign travel from August - October)

Summer is finally here.

It has been two months of highs and lows, but through it all God's grace has always been there when needed.

In April I had the awesome privilege of baptising our daughter at Green Pastures Church in Ballymena. A few week's later she and our grandson emigrated to Australia to join her husband who had gone out one month earlier.

We had had over a year to come to terms with the parting and thought we were ready, but it turned out that we were not. For three or four days days we were very emotional and quite disorientated!  However as we keep in touch almost on a daily basis it is clear that they have really taken to Australia and are doing very well.  It is definitely God's best.

I had the shock of logging on to the web site only to be confronted with a Google banned sign advising people not to enter the site as it contained malware, and also had links to a porn site.

I immediately contacted the company who host the site and asked them how this could have happened and they said that some how someone had been able to hack into the site on the servers and install malware.  The only way to repair the site was to delete all 3,300 files from the server and reinstall them. Then change the system password. As many of the files are large audio or video files this took three days and nights to complete but Google were then happy to remove the warning sign.  I thought that was the end of that.

However a week later the warning sign was back on the site, and after a lengthy talk with the hosting company a search by them found an 'invisible file' that I would not have been able to see and thus delete. So they removed it, I again removed and reinstalled the files, changed the password again and so far all is back to normal. 

I attended the hospital for my annual check up on April 6th. Normally this goes very well and is very uplifting as all is excellent. However this time as I walked in to see the consultant he noticed that I was breathing hard from the 10 metre walk to his room.  I had not noticed this but he seemed to be concerned. He made plans for me to be attached to a 24 hour heart monitor when one became available (which could be months away)  It did not bother me as I felt fine.

However as the next two weeks went by I was becoming ill and easily became breathless. I found that even a minimum effort brought me to exhaustion. All was definitely not well.  Linda and I decided that it might be beneficial for me to go and spend a number of days at my sister's house to recover, but after a few days it was obvious that I was getting worse not better.

I was due to fly to England to take a 'Quiver event -an 18-30 youth course - at Ellel Pierrepont leaving April 30th and returning May 4th, and now I felt it right to email them and let them know that it did not look as if I would be able to come and teach.  Finally on the Saturday April 25th I decided that I must be dying (yes it was that bad!) and asked if I could be driven to the hospital.  I was 100% sure that I would be kept in and that 'it was all over'  However, to my surprise, after many tests the results showed that my heart was unchanged!  I went back to my sister's house to continue recuperation, feeling as unwell, but now knowing it was not 'all over' 

The following morning during my quiet time, as I was reading a devotional passage from Angus Buchan's 'Farmer's Journal' he suggested that the reader ask God for a promise in a difficult situation. This witnessed to me so I began to pray that request. Before I even had my prayer completed God spoke clearly into my spirit saying 'My grace is sufficient for you, My strength is made perfect in weakness'. It was delivered so powerfully into my spirit that it left me in no doubt that my prayer had been answered while still on my lips.  Standing on that promise I told Linda that I would go to England mid week after all. She said she would come with me. We booked the cheapest flight which meant a 4 am start on the Wednesday morning. Jill Southern, the Centre Director phoned me to suggest that I should not come since I was clearly unwell but I said that God had spoken to me and I would be ok. She then kindly suggested that I cancel my early morning flight and take a mid day flight to make things easier and that they would happily pay the difference, but no, I decided I would fully stand on God's promise and leave things as they were. 

When we arrived at Gatwick airport I thought I would faint and it took a strong hold on my suitcase trolley handle and the wonderful name of 'Jesus' whispered many times to stop me falling down.  When we reached Pierrepont Jill Southern suggested that I go to bed immediately and sleep for the rest of the day which I did. Six unbroken hours before evening meal time. Then back to bed again.

The following morning - the day that the event began - I awoke feeling 100%!  Linda and I went for a long leisurely walk and I was not tired or out of breathe at all.

When the event started that evening there were several activities to help get the young folk from the many nations (I counted 17 nations) get to know each other. I decided to join in. The final event was a speed event which meant racing up the hall to find your opposite number and drop to the floor when you found them.  As heat after heat went by I ended up in the final two pairs and to my surprise I won this high energy event.  The prize was wrapped in lovely paper and tied with ribbon. Later that evening when I opened the prize it turned out to be a Christian notebook. And there on the cover was the promise. 'My grace is sufficient for you. My strength is made perfect in weakness'. 

God's grace, God's promise, God's power, God's faithfulness! The event was a joy to be involved in. The delegates were so hungry to grow in Christ. I was privileged to teach them. Thank you Lord!

The one hour river walk, stopping at various points for more teaching. Beautiful spring weather helped.

Linda and I had the joy and privilege of travelling once again to Ellel Sweden based in the stunningly beautiful area of Kafalla near Lindesberg. This time, it was a 'Men of God' weekend. The quality of men who attended was excellent and they came to do serious business with God. Their hunger made the teaching so easy, even though at times we were looking at some difficult subjects. We look forward to returning in the autumn for two weeks.  Thank you men for having such hungry hearts for God.
After returning home I received a very encouraging email from Centre Director Goran, who said "we have received lots of feedback and it has all been so positive...hope you are even more desiring to get back to Sweden as people are asking us repeatedly " When is he coming back?"  Yes welcome back indeed, we so appreciate having you here''  
Sweden is so beautiful, and this time I brought my best camera equipment and was up at 4.30 am the first morning to capture some of the beauty. (I thought it was 7am! - had I known it was 4.30am I would have gone back to sleep!)  I now have so many extraordinary photos of Sweden that I have given a whole gallery over to this one country on my photography website. The photo at the top of the page is one example, here is another.. (called 'morning glory')

I continue to teach at the Green Pastures Servant Academy in Green Pastures, Ballymena.  It is wonderful to see the progress that the class is now starting to show.  A ministry team from Christian Restoration in Ireland led by Prayer Ministry Leader Anne Galway continues to minister at the church every Thursday.  Teaching continues every Tuesday evening for the CRi team. The subject in recent weeks has been 'Understanding discernment and deception' 

Weekend beginning Friday June 12th we had more Life-line 'lads' up with us at the Rostrevor Renewal Centre for a Father heart of God. As always God was very present and we had the privilege of leading some to the Lord, and to see others grow greatly in their understanding of God's heart for them. 

One of the joys of working closely with Lifeline Ministries is to see the journey these lads make. Robert (left) from Cork is one example.

I had the privilege of leading Robert to the Lord during a three day visit to Lifeline Headquarters in Drogheda in September 2008 and also the privilege of baptising him the following day.

Robert has not only completed his six month course with flying colours but is now going to join the Lifeline leadership team to work with other men gripped by the cruel addiction of drugs. This is the power of the salvation.

Linda ministering in the main teaching hall

Robert receiving his gift from Lifeline leader Paul Millar

The Lifeline lads and the Christian Restoration team at the end of the weekend

Our youngest son David (22) has travelled several more times to Lifeline for two days a week to help disciple the new believers there. He loves serving the Lord full time and the lads love him. He gave his life to Jesus aged 4, and has never turned left or right. He attended the six month Ellel NETS school at Pierrepont England, and also completed one year at the Andrew Womack Bible School in Belfast. He has been a member of the Christian Restoration in Ireland ministry team for two years.

The 'Father heart of God' in GERMANY

This was my first teaching visit to Germany and what a privilege it turned out to be. Ellel Ministries International have offices and rent facilities from the massive JMS Christian Centre in beautiful Altensteig, near to the famous Black forest area. (Our room and the teaching hall is to the right of this picture)

We had one and a half free days to relax and see the area, and my long standing friend Andreas Hefti from Switzerland, now the Director of Ellel Germany, delighted in showing Linda and I the beauty of the area. It was fun to eat Black Forest Gateaux in the Black forest. I took this picture of the Black Forest towards the end of our first day. 
The morning of our second day Andreas showed us the beautiful historical town of Altensteig and nearby towns before we met the Ellel prayer ministry team for the first time.
Linda and I were very impressed with the character of the people we met, both Christian and non Christian. We were also blessed to be told that we were especially welcome as it was the Irish who first brought the gospel to Germany at the end of the dark ages, especially Columbanus from our home town of Bangor. We were given a CD of music to celebrate the 'Bangor revival' of that sixth century era!  
Columbanus - Bangor - Germany - Martin Luther - Reformation - wow!  What a link up!


I was told that Germany was a fatherless nation because of the second world war and that this teaching was much needed. It certainly was. Both delegates and prayer ministry team were touched deeply by the truths that were set before them. The testimonies at the end were probably the best or the second best I have heard in ten years of teaching this subject.  There was much laughter and many tears. One person said later "It was very funny yet very deep at the same time"

As we could not read German we were unable to enter into the worship, but simply closed our eyes and listened to the singing. Linda and I agreed that it was some of the most beautiful and harmonious we had ever heard at a seminar. You would have thought the delegates were a choir that had been training for months!  It was while I was listening that I felt God speak into my spirit and ask me to stand before the people as 'a father' and ask for forgiveness for wrong fathering that they had received from their fathers. I had never done this before in public, but I obeyed this leading and asked if any woman was willing to step forward on behalf of all the women who had suffered from poor or absent fathering and forgive me on behalf of all their fathers. One lady came forward and I hugged her and said that I was so sorry for the poor fathering she had received. This very deep event produced many tears and much healing among the ladies. I then asked the same from the men. One man stepped forward and I asked him to forgive me for the wrong fathering he had received and again, as only God can, He used this to bring healing to the men.  These moments were so sacred that I felt I could just not continue teaching and asked Marianne, the anointed worship leader to come back to her keyboard and simply play quietly for ten minutes.  The Presence of God was so evident and we knew that much was being done at a deep level by His Spirit. When that session was over several more people waited behind for a 'daddy hug' and the tears and resultant release in their soul was evidence of God at work. One lady asked if I could stand in for her father in a reverse way as when she was a teenager she let her dying father down and she needed to say sorry. I asked Jesus if He would allow and anoint this and He did, and the release in the lady's spirit was delightful to see. The man who had come forward gave testimony later that he had always hoped that one day his father would have said sorry for his behaviour, but he never had. When, while holding him in a hug I felt led to whisper 'I am SO sorry' it had brought great release to him.  This was all something new in the Father heart of God and made the weekend so special for me as well. 

Linda and I enjoyed several brunches at Andreas's apartment when we dined well along with the full time Ellel team. It was here that we discovered that Andreas owned and could play the massive Alpine Horn. naturally we insisted that he play and I can assure you that the deep deep notes of Amazing Grace could probably have been heard back in his home country of Switzerland.
Several weeks after this visit I received a very encouraging visit for Andreas Hefti.  It read...

Dear Ken, dear Linda

I hope you are both well. Thanks once more for everything. It was such a precious time together. We still get amazing feedbacks from the course which seems to draw circles. I picked up that it was not only your personal testimony Ken, but also your living letter as a couple which touched people's hearts. An encouragement for you as well as Linda. You didn't say much (as a couple) but what you represent must have spoken volumes...

A five person CRi team made a ministry visit to 'God's Garage in Portroe, County Tipperary weekend beginning July 10th.  Friday evening teaching  entitled 'What is holding you back' was wonderfully well received. The average person had driven two hours to attend, coming from as far away as Dublin, Cork, Limerick and Galway. Saturday morning teaching 'When your faith is rocked' was followed by personal prayer ministry for 25 people. We did not finish until mid evening. I thank God for a well trained, faithful team.
Prepare to have your faith challenged! Before we left God laid it on my heart to film an interview with two remarkable young mums from Portroe.  Anne Marie who designed and built God's Garage in the grounds of her home, and Allison, a Christian of one year who survived a murder attempt on her life six months ago.

Trust me, you will be inspired and challenged to the core of your being! Just click on the picture and watch 47 minutes of video.. 

I travelled to Ellel Pierrepont on Tuesday 21st . This is my 10th year teaching NETS students and I count it a real privilege.

On Wednesday I taught NETS term 4 students for one day on the 'Dark night of the soul' and 'Hearing God'

On Thursday and Friday I taught NETS term 2 students on the 'Father heart of God'

On Friday morning I brought the message at communion. 'What's holding you back?'


I received a lovely letter from one of the students saying.. "Thank you Ken for sharing the Father heart of God. Especially for the Holy Communion address on how worldly standards have imparted the Body of Christ and unbelief within Christian believers.  Please continue to share worldwide this message.."

I will be in Australia from August 1st to September 31st, then off to Hungary and Sweden shortly after returning.  So I cannot see any chance of another Newsletter until late Autumn.

May God bless you richly

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